Shirts or Skins, a 2014 poetry chapbook by Jim Redmond

Cloud Gate, Chicago

Whatever is given here
is only, instantaneously
a giving back—

a sort of lapsed mitosis
which bends the city
in the easy hammock
of its untiring appraisal.

Or a thing divorced,
polished clean of ideas—
to sit unthinking and alone
in the flat well of its

or to belatedly recall
quicksilver as a child’s

within its perfect balance,
above suspicion
above intention.

Giant bean,
fat parabola,
the belly of some future

and underneath this all
a navel,
as if such things could be born
beyond suffering.

Originally published in RHINO


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